Sweet angel voices singing;
All glory be to God on high,
Who peace on earth is bringing.
The Virgin Mary holdeth more
Than highest heaven most holy;
Light shines on what was dark before,
And lifteth up the lowly.
God wills that peace shall be on earth,
And holy exultation:
Sweet Babe, I greet Thy spotless birth
And wondrous Incarnation.
Today in Bethlehem hear I
Even the lowly singing:
With angel-words they pierce the sky;
All earth with joy is ringing.
-from the Greek of John of Damascus, d. 754 A.D.